wood, straw, rubber, & leather

IMG_0389, originally uploaded by Almost-Human.

What more could a rustic shoe fetishist want?

So all of you who know me probably remember me walking around the streets of Seattle in Dutch clogs. (and no, this is not common in Seattle) and mile high platforms (and no, this is not common in Seattle) and if I could break into that museum display, I would grab me some of those rubber shoes and wear them too. And don’t get me going about the leather boots!

I went to the International Friends Walk at the Cheonggyechon Stream in Seoul so I could get a pair of jipsin straw shoes, but they were made for feet the size of Kareem Abduhl Jabbar, so not wearable. But damnit, I AM going to learn how to make these and break all convention by actually wearing them.

Now that Korea has proven itself with industry, technology, and development, maybe it’s time to step back and slow-the-fuck-down. Maybe some lo-fi music, some nuevo folk, some home-spun, down-home, all-natural goodness.

Maybe I can start a new trend – away from the status-conscious modern Korean version of dynasty fashion – away from the pop sex toy doll look – and towards something more practical and yet cultural.

Not that I want it to be a post modern gesture, either. No. I mean like raimie and cotton are cool in the summer. Straw is nice to walk on in the summer. Platforms are fun and keep your feet out of the water when it’s raining. Wooden shoes are insulating and super strong. And all of the above can be very very hip. Most cultural artifacts were born of necessity and became commonwealth because they were SMART solutions. Let’s make being natural and smart the hip thing to do.

4 thoughts on “wood, straw, rubber, & leather

  1. While in France I stayed in the city of Bourg-de-Pèage/Romans (they’re located on opposite sides of a river); the latter of which is famous for being “the shoe capital of France”. There’s a great shoe museum there that I think you might enjoy.

    Also, interesting to hear that you used to live in Seattle! I lived in Olympia before coming here. This might sound odd, but there are times when I miss the rain.

    If you’re looking for nuevo-folk, quiet indie, and lo-fi music in Korea I would recommend Yozoh (요조), Kim Younha (김윤아), Lee Sang Eun (이상은), Yeongene & BMX Bandits, and maybe Ibadi. It does exist in Korea, but it’s a lot harder to find.

  2. I wore the rubber shoes. At the orphanage, my rubber shoes were green, yellow and white. I was wearing them on my first Holt photo. I took them with me when I came to America. I wore them few times until people mocked at me.
    My mother wanted me to keep them as a souvenir of the days I came to her life. I kept them because it was a way to hold on to my past, then I threw them about 15 years ago because they were desintegrating and everything from Korea was hurting me too much.

  3. Thanks for the music links, Paul! I’ll check them out – I had to think there was SOMETHING here with more artistic merit than Kpop.

    I miss NW weather too. The rain is warmer. Warm days are not oppressively humid. The cold is not so bone-chilling.

    While in Toronto I went to the Bata shoe museum
    was the highlight of my trip. France might have to be in another life…

  4. I don’t remember if I actually had rubber shoes – I think my parents sent Western clothes for me to wear home, as Holt asked them to do that.

    I had some rubber doll shoes though. Blue and white with red flowers painted on them. I played with them hard, so don’t know what happened to them. Most things Korean I owned were bought later by my parents (more for their benefit than mine) A handkerchief (framed) with girls on a sea-saw. A dictionary. That’s about it I guess.

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